Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Nigerian Food at Mama African

Originally published in the July Issue of Seoul Magazine
Mama African
Mama African: Spicy Meat Stew with Yam
The restaurant invites you in with a royal blue sign in yellow script and the place has an American cowboy parlor feel with their wood panel walls and chandeliers hanging from the ceiling. The customers inside are boisterous and upbeat as they let off some steam from their long day. Entering the restaurant, we got a few odd looks but the music and the conversation kept flowing.

Nigerian cuisine often has yams, cassava, plantains, rice, and meat and fish curry-like stews. The food is also very fun to eat since you make a little shovel from the steamed, white, pounded yam and use it to dip into the dishes. I recommend you try the egwusi stew that is made from ground melon seeds that give this dish a tapioca-like texture. It is a yellow curry-like stew that has some meat and fish. The sharp taste of the green leaves balances out the savory taste of this dish.

 I also liked the “white rice with stew.” The red stew had lots of chunks of beef and the tomato red sauce had a spice that had a refreshing like vindaloo.

I would also recommend their Jollof rice, which is a flavorful jambalaya-like dish with chunks of meat and veggies.

And you can’t go wrong with the fried plantains, which taste like a banana and yam fused together and fried.

Mama African
Yongsan-gu, Itaewon 1-dong 127-17
English and English Menus available Prices: 5-10,000 won per plate

Directions: Go out Itaewon Station (line 6) exit 4 and cross the street. Make the first left after Taco Bell and walk up the street. You’ll see Mama Africa on the left.

Fried Plantains

Mama African

View Larger Map